Sunday 19 May 2019

PC16 - what the heck

Plenty of weird things happened today. Let's walk through them:

1) Harry Ward won the title

Yep, that's a strange one. A very strange one. He'd had a couple of sighters before, getting to the quarter finals on two occasions, but to actually take one to the hoop came from nowhere really. Four last leg victories is ever so slightly fortunate, and a sub-90 points per turn for the tournament shows quite how opportunist this one was, running into Max Hopp in the final, who was scoring less per turn in the tournament than he was. Fair play for getting there, but you wonder if this is going to put him into some things too soon.

2) Robert Thornton has form

What the hell was Rob smoking today? A run to the semi final with a solid 92 points per turn for the event, beating van Gerwen, hitting a nine darter as well, it was only some missed doubles that prevented him from getting to the final and possibly going all the way. It's something to build on hopefully - Thornton's always had a habit of being really good for a month or so, often when there's a major tournament on, then being close to irrelevant for months on end - he is, if I read Twitter right, still outside of the provisional worlds spots.

3) Jose de Sousa is red hot

Here's your last remaining semi finalist, and it was good play from the Portuguese player, approaching 95 points per turn which is easily the highest of any of the four semi finalists, and only bettered by two players that won their board. He was a bit fortunate in who he drew, the strongest player he faced probably being Vincent van der Voort in the last 16, but with how he played, he could have faced tougher opponents and still advanced. He's got a couple of Euro Tour events coming up so can maybe build on this where the prizes can really escalate.

4) Both yesterday's finalists lost first round

This seemed odd. Darius Labanauskas ran into Ross Smith (conventionally) averaging 99, which is fair enough, but Duzza fell to Tytus Kanik, which is a bit questionable.

5) Scott Taylor? Really?

The one guy that had a UK Open run from outside the tour card holders had another solid run, winning his board by taking out Cristo Reyes, Ricky Evans (averaging 101) then Ross Smith (averaging 108), before overcoming John Henderson with another high 90 average, de Sousa would be too strong in the quarters, but it's a nice run.

New FRH rankings:

1 Michael van Gerwen
2 Rob Cross
3 Michael Smith
4 Gary Anderson
5 Daryl Gurney
6 Gerwyn Price
7 James Wade
8 Peter Wright
9 Nathan Aspinall
10 Ian White (UP 1)
11 Mensur Suljovic (DOWN 1)
12 Dave Chisnall
13 Simon Whitlock
14 Jonny Clayton
15 Adrian Lewis
16 Darren Webster
17 Joe Cullen
18 Max Hopp (UP 1)
19 Stephen Bunting (DOWN 1)
20 Steve Beaton

Suljovic took the weekend off, so White making the quarters yesterday was just about good enough to creep into the top 10, while Hopp's final gives him a good cushion over Bunting, who missed on both days.

Lower down the order, a double quarter final from Chris Dobey sees him rise to 26 and will certainly help with Matchplay qualification, Ron Meulenkamp, Glen Durrant, Robert Thornton and Darius Labanauskas all occupy spots in the fifties after their runs this weekend, Harry Ward is just a few hundred points off the top 80, Jose de Sousa is close to the top 90, while Scott Taylor and Ryan Meikle reclaim top 100 spots after good weekends.

We've got the Premier League final this Thursday, not that we care about it, then the Dutch Darts Masters next weekend, before a small break before the World Cup, so next weekend's the only competitive darts in nearly a month, which is a shame. Not even any BDO events to really speak of. At least we have the Development Tour during the World Cup.

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